Posts Categorized: Informal Learning

It is time to simplify

The five informal learning methods described in yesterday’s post on Learning in the Workplace have one thing in common. They are all relatively simple. Most of today’s larger companies have a complicated structure. Over time, to enable growth and efficiencies, more processes have been put in place. New layers of control and supervision continue to… Read more »

Learning in the workplace

Jane Hart asked readers “how regularly are you “learning” in the workplace?” Here are the top five ways that people learn, with my comments below on how this can be facilitated in the organization, either by management or the learning support group. Notice that these are all informal. The more formal methods, like courses, ranked… Read more »

Boundaries are for learning

Opportunity lies at the edge of systems. Real value creation happens at the edge of organizations. That’s also where we find learning opportunities. Understanding the role of boundaries in human systems can also give us ways to take advantage of them for learning, as Kathia Laszlo writes in Reflecting on Boundaries: Who is teaching and… Read more »

Take off those rose coloured glasses

Training is only 5% of organizational learning, but for a long time this small slice has been the primary focus of most Learning & Development (L&D) departments. The other 95% was just taken care of by the informal networks in the organization. On-job-training in some cases, or just observation and modelling in others. Then a… Read more »


One of the consultant’s dilemmas is that you have to stay ahead of the curve to remain relevant. Yesterday’s problem doesn’t need to be solved – there’s probably an app for that already. This is why “perpetual Beta” informs all of my work. I used to work as a training designer but there’s really not… Read more »

Using social media for onboarding

Last year, I looked at new hire practices and found some interesting methods: Ensuring new hires understand the shadow or informal part of the organization through the use of tools such as network maps (Jon Katzenbach, Senior Partner of Booz & Company, author of The Wisdom of Teams). Pairing with another worker or even tripling… Read more »

learning is not something to get

“When times were tough, training departments slashed budgets by replacing face-to-face instruction with online reading. They failed to follow through with the discussions, practice, social processing, and reinforcement that makes lessons stick. It didn’t work. Most eLearning is ineffective drudgery.” —Jay Cross In too many cases we view learning as something that is done to… Read more »

The only knowledge that can be managed is our own

“Every amateur epistemologist knows that knowledge cannot be managed. Education has always assumed that knowledge can be transferred and that we can carefully control the process through education. That is a grand illusion.” – Dave Jonassen The only knowledge that can be managed is our own. In my opinion, knowledge management should be about supporting personal… Read more »

Shifting to Net Work

Our first Net Work Literacy session ends this week. There were several reasons why Jane Hart and I decided to offer this two-week online programe. The idea first came to me as I realized how many of my clients and colleagues were not as connected as they could be, too often wasting their time on routine… Read more »


Part of Personal Knowledge Management is seeking sources of knowledge (Seek-Sense-Share). To be able to seek, first you have to be aware. Wolfgang Reinhardt has looked at knowledge workers, researchers in particular, and examined how they can be aware in their fields of expertise. Wolfgang graciously sent me a copy of his PhD thesis (Awareness:… Read more »